Monday, December 1, 2014

Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire

December is HERE! It's always been my favorite month and being in Cortina just makes it that much better. In this region of the world, they take Christmas very seriously. There are Christmas markets all over Northern Italy, gluhwein is everywhere, and Cortina is decked out in twinkling lights. I love the people watching, the light at the end of the day and having aperitivo - even the Prosecco tastes better in December.

There is a rule in the Dingle household that on December 1, you are allowed to start singing Christmas carols. So, in honor of one of our faves, we decided to roast chestnuts at home. I love chestnuts almost as much as I love December. They're in season for a few months beginning in November and luckily they sneak their way into all the Christmas markets. When I saw them in the grocery store though, I realized that I didn't have to go to Innsbruck to eat chestnuts! I could roast them at home. So while we didn't quite do it over an open fire, like this:

...we still did it in the oven! (The above picture was taken from a chestnut festival that Cortina hosts every year).

Roasted Chestnuts
(About 20 chestnuts; serves 2)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Using a sharp knife, cut a fairly deep slit in each chestnut, about an inch long. Place chestnuts on a baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes. When they're done, the shells will be separating from the meaty part inside. Take them out and place in a bowl - careful - the shells are hot! Peel the shells away and eat.

PS - Chestnut of our friend's made this last year and it was heaven.

And also...the only bad thing about December